Perez Hilton, the celebrity blogger who called Miss California Carrie Prejean a "bitch," and worse, for her opposition to gay marriage, says he would "love to return" as a judge at next year's Miss USA pageant — and Donald Trump says he would "love to have him back."
Trump, who owns the Miss USA Organization, said Hilton — whose real name is Mario Lavandeira — will be invited back despite the controversial question about gay marriage that he posed to Prejean, 21, during the April 19 pageant.
"I’d love to have him back," Trump said. "I mean, I'd love to have him back."
Hilton, meanwhile, wrote in an e-mail to FOXNews.com that he'd happy to return and "ask another relevant and good question."
"I was not surprised by today's announcement," Hilton wrote, after Trump announced at a news conference that Prejean would be allowed to keep her crown. "When it was revealed that Carrie Prejean would be attending the press conference, I pretty much guessed correctly then that Donald Trump would let her keep the crown as Miss California."
During the pageant, Hilton asked Prejean for her opinion on the subject of same-sex marriage, and she responded that, as a Christian, she was brought up believing that marriage should be limited to between a man and a woman. In a video blog posted shortly after the pageant, an enraged Hilton called Prejean a "stupid bitch."
Hilton later declined to apologize for the rant during an interview with MSNBC.
"I called her the 'b' word, and hey, I was thinking the 'c' word," Hilton said during the interview.
He declined on Tuesday to indicate whether he'd post similar messages in the future should he not agree with a contestant's answer.
"I'd rather focus on the future than revisit the past," Hilton wrote. "Just like Carrie wants to go on with her duties as Miss California I'd like for us to continue talking about the very pressing issue of gay marriage and full equality under the law."
For her part, Prejean, who briefly became emotional during Tuesday's press conference, said she has forgiven Hilton.
"Absolutely I forgive Perez Hilton," Prejean told scores of reporters at the Trump Tower in Manhattan. "There must be a deeper issue going on in his heart. I definitely forgive him."
Asked if she thought she lost the pageant by saying he favored limiting marriage to a man and a woman, Prejean demurred.
"I can't give you an answer for that, I'm not sure," she said. "I do know there was a personal hidden agenda there and I just gave my honest answer."
But Prejean's response "certainly didn't help," Trump admitted.
"[Hilton] gave her very low marks out there," he said. "And they were, you know, understandably, he really gave her low marks. It certainly didn't help. There's no question about it."